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Oldies But Goldies

At a red-carpet event in Shanghai, Swiss watch brand Breitling celebrated the launch of its new Navitimer 8 collection and exhibited 60 vintage timepieces for the very first time. More than 300 distinguished guests from Greater China, Japan, Korea, and Southeast Asia were welcomed by Breitling’s new global CEO, Georges Kern, who introduced the storied brand’s latest chapter. Chinese actor and director Stephen Fung, Chinese actor Yang Shuo, and Korean actor Ji-Sung were also on hand for the festivities and shared their passion for the brand. From Shanghai, Breitling will take its international tour next to Zurich and then to New York City.

Georges Kern, who was named CEO of Breitling in the summer of 2017, recounted Breitling’s rich heritage to the assembled guests at the banquet-style dinner, and committed himself to taking the brand into what he described as “a legendary future.” He added that he was particularly excited about Breitling’s newest product line.

The guests were excited to experience the newest watches and were also impressed by a collection of 60 vintage pieces showcasing Breitling’s remarkable heritage. At the after-dinner party, guests had the opportunity to immerse themselves in the brand’s rich heritage and precision watchmaking techniques through a series of interactive activities that highlighted the brand’s design, innovations, and pioneering achievements.

Breitling launched a brand-new collection at the ceremony as a tribute to Willy Breitling and the Huit Aviation Department he founded in 1938. The name is an allusion to the number “eight” (huit in French), which Willy Breitling chose as a reference to the eight-day power reserve that was considered essential for onboard timekeeping instruments on planes, but not necessarily for the wrist chronographs of that era. The new collection has been built on the legacy of the Breitling brand and its earliest pilot’s watches, and will play an important role in taking the company into a legendary future.

Another highlight of the evening was Breitling’s opportunity to welcome chronograph collector Fred Mandelbaum, who brought a selection of 60 of his classic vintage Breitling watches to the celebration. The combination of the debut of the Navitimer 8 collection and the display of Fred Mandelbaum’s 60 timeless masterpieces allowed guests to not only gain a glimpse into the rich history and heritage of Breitling, but also into the brand’s incredible possibilities for the future.